No More Cattle Raising on the Planet of the Trees

A study of Srila Prabhupada’s last instructions on book editing
By: 
Lalitanatha dasa

To this day, almost forty years after the passing of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, confusion still reigns among some devotees about his desires and instructions regarding how he wanted his main legacy, his transcendental books, taken care of. Thus some devotees continue to express doubts regarding the posthumous editing and correcting that have been done on Śrīla Prabhupāda’s books by his publishing company, The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust.

To this day, almost forty years after the passing of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, confusion still reigns among some devotees about his desires and instructions regarding how he wanted his main legacy, his transcendental books, taken care of. Thus some devotees continue to express doubts regarding the posthumous editing and correcting that have been done on Śrīla Prabhupāda’s books by his publishing company, The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust. These doubts have in some places escalated to the point of causing schisms among His Divine Grace’s followers.

To help clarifying this situation, the following document is an analysis of Śrīla Prabhupāda’s two last instructions regarding his desires for his books, which he expressed shortly before his departure. One of these is the famous “Rascal Editors” conversation from June 1977; the other is the last instruction from Śrīla Prabhupāda to his BBT, a letter dated July 22, 1977, from Śrīla Prabhupāda’s secretary, Tamāl Krishna Mahārāja, to the leader of the North American BBT in Los Angeles, Rāmeśvara Swami. The conclusion is that the BBT and its editors appear in general to have understood and honored Śrīla Prabhupāda’s last instructions and desires regarding the editing of his books.

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